Going into the weekend. I had 6 of the final 8 teams correct in the NCAA tournament, including all final four teams. Then Marquette and Ohio State reminded me why I usually don't watch college sports. And Florida and Louisville could conceivably make it to the championship game and win me the pool. But the bracket did it's job in the sense that it gave me something to do through the tournament. So, with Baseball upon us, thank all that's good in the world, I thought why not take a shot at predicting the Baseball season...
New York Yankees- Everyone says this is the year the mighty Yanks fall. Perhaps. But the pitching is still strong. They only need one of their has been pile to get hot in April and May to bridge the gap till Tex and Granderson get back. And Joe knows how to win garbage games. In this division, there will be a lot of them.
Tampa Bay Rays- Love me some Price, love me some Matt More. But Hellickson is average. And I don't like the rest. Longoria will find a way to get hurt because that's what he does. And the team that should win the division will find itself in the coin flip game.
Toronto Bluejays- So all the players that were part of the Miami Marlins Bust up season are now Blue Jays and that makes them contenders? Prove it.
Baltimore Orioles- One season long market correction.
Boston Red Sox- Clearing a quarter billion dollars worth of salary was genius. Filling up that space by over paying Shane Victorino, Ryan Dempster, and Mike Napoli, was genius getting hit in the head with a 2x4.
Detroit Tigers- Best by a long margin.
Kansas City Royals- Really like the James Shields trade, despite being an overpay, and Hosmer and Moutstakous should bounce back from growing pains. Would be neat if they finally had some success too.
Cleveland Indians- Not a fan of their pitching. But they'll win a lot of 9-6 games.
White Sox- They had a lot of things break their way last year. Not sure I see it repeating.
Minnesota Twins- Probably last year in the basement as their farm system is loaded....
California Angels- Not sold on the back end of the rotation. But what a lineup.
Texas Rangers- Your other coin flip team. Although it will be a struggle to overcome the hangover of last year. And the loss of Drugstore Josh to the Angels.
Oakland A's- Wish it were higher as they are such a blast to watch. But another year long market correction team.
Seattle Mariners- One of my favorite Ballparks. The team however...not so much.
Houston Astros- 120 losses, and if that Rondon kid from North Carolina St gets hurt between now and June 2014, will it really be worth it?
Tigers over Angels
San Francisco Giants- Still don't think they're any good. Thought that after the first world series. Think that after their second. But they'll find a way.
San Diego Padres- really like what I see from this team. Pitching gets wonky, (Cashner probably just hurt himself as I wrote this). But fun exciting team.
LA Dodgers- I don't care too much for money, money can't buy my love.
Diamondbacks- Probably should be placed 1st with all that pitching. But trading Upton was a mistake. also over valuing a no-hit SS. Dumb diggity dumb.
Colorado Rockies- It's not hard to suck air a mile high when you're this bad.
St. Louis Cardinals- Yeah, their DP combination sucks. But they have young good pitching for years. And they have the best farm system going. So if Troy Tulowitzki winds up being the latest deity of the creepy fans, I won't be shocked.
Cincinnati Reds- Probably should be 1st. Love their bats and arms. Coin flip game possibly. But Dusty teams reach peaks. And we all know what happens next.
Cubs- Bit of a reach. But pitching and defense will allow the Cubs to win more games than they should. like against....
Pittsburgh Pirates- This team might have peaked. And I think they're manager, who has cost them plenty of games, might cost them even more.
Milwaukee Brewers- Braun might be suspended, Kyle Loshe is 57 years old. Ricky Weeks is still Ricky Weeks. Bad moon rising...
Washington Nationals- NL Cy young Stephen Strasburg leads incredibly talented team to World Series. And Rizzo has last laugh over doubters.
Atlanta Braves- Coin flip game again for the Braves. Although that outfield is going to be fascinating.
Philadelphia Phillies- Bad.
New York Mets- Really bad.
Miami Marlins- Really really bad.
Nationals over Reds
Nationals over Tigers.
Cano and Votto your MVP's. Strasburg and....Hmmm....lemme see.......Max Scherzer your Cy Youngs.
Odds and Sods
Been holding off on commenting on the whole Rosemont-Wrigley field renovation- Tom Tunney thing. Cause politics ain't my bag. here's what I will say...
It's Rickett's team, he should do what he wants. He wants to refurbish Wrigley. He should be allowed to, especially if he's willing to pay most of the freight. I've seen the plans for Wrigley, I like the plans for Wrigley. I haven't heard a reason why they shouldn't renovate Wrigley. And why Ricketts should move the team for other people's spite and frustration is beyond silly to me.
I also think a nice back room conversation where it's suggested that Joe Rickets, who was willing to spend billions and nearly got the president removed, wouldn't have to work nearly as hard to have an alderman replaced, things might move a little quicker. Hey, that's how things get done right...?
Why were we playing all those regulars in the last exhibition of the season again?
Since I referenced it before, I guess A Hard Days Night is today's Beatles album. Roger Ebert's favorite movie of all time too.
I'm setting the over and under on Chris Rusin starting a game in Chicago at May 15th.
I'm gonna watch the Blackhawks today. Then I'm gonna write my first column for The Ivy Drip- My brother's Chicago cub online weekly. Several bloggers will be contributing. Even John Arguello ( Although, he hasn't handed in this week's column.....ahem.). You can find out about it at http://theivydrip.wordpress.com.
By the way, I don't know how many follow hockey, but Jerome Iginla, a 15 year all star forward for the Calgary Flames, did exactly what Ryan Dempster did last year to the Cubs, demand that he be traded to one team, thus killing a great deal for a team he supposedly loves. Only this was even more last minute and with a team he was even more associated with. And nobody said anything. Other than Flames fans giving Iginla a standing ovation EVEN THOUGH HE WASN"T IN THE BUILDING. Instead they roasted the GM. No one thought twice to criticize Theo.
Of course, had the Dempster debacle gone down on Jim Hendry's watch.....
Perspective is a funny thing.
Opening day tomorrow!!!! How awesome is that?